FDI President Dr Kathryn Kell returns home for FDI World Dental Congress 2019 San Francisco

17 October 2018 Congress
Portrait of Dr Kathryn Kell

Dr Kathryn Kell, FDI president (2017–2019), shares her enthusiasm to host next year’s Congress together with her friends and colleagues from the American Dental Association.

Tell us a bit about the upcoming FDI World Dental Congress in San Francisco, California – what makes this event unique?

Next year’s FDI World Dental Congress will be a truly collaborative event. In 2019, FDI will work side by side with the American Dental Association (ADA) to host the Congress in San Francisco, California, from 5–8 September. The California Dental Association and the San Francisco Dental Society will also provide local expertise and support. Together, we hope to create a positive and impactful dental meeting for attendees, guests and exhibitors.

We also expect a large national and international presence at next year’s event. Our ambition is to deliver a Congress like no other – we are ready to welcome a diverse global contingent of dentists and other professionals within the oral health community and ensure that each visitor returns home with valuable insights and knowledge to help improve oral healthcare worldwide.

We are thrilled to be back in San Francisco next year – FDI first held its annual Congress there 54 years ago, in 1964. San Francisco is a desirable and inclusive destination for local, national and international participants, and we hope that attendees will be able to take full advantage of all that the city has to offer.

As an American dentist yourself, you enjoy a special relationship with the American Dental Association. How do you envision the FDI-ADA partnership?

FDI is proud to partner with the ADA. As the largest dental association in the United States, representing more than 161,000 member dentists, the ADA has successfully supported patients in their quest for quality care since 1859. FDI has a strong relationship with the United States that extends far back in history – we’ve hosted our annual Congress in the United States on eight different occasions over the past century.

Next year, we look forward to pooling our strengths to produce an engaging and modern scientific programme and pull off one of the largest industry exhibitions that we’ve ever seen at an FDI World Dental Congress.

On a more personal note, I’m grateful for the professional relationship I’ve been able to cultivate with the ADA over the years. From 2004–2008, I was elected to the Board of Trustees after having served on numerous councils and committees. I may be biased, but I believe that the ADA is an exceptional organization, and I have the utmost confidence in their ability to help us deliver an FDI World Dental Congress of the highest calibre.

"Only by working together and having policies of inclusion for all people, countries, and backgrounds, can we achieve our ambition of optimal oral health for all."
Dr Kathryn Kell

Your term as FDI President will formally conclude at the 2019 FDI World Dental Congress – what do you dream to accomplish in this next phase of your mandate?

Over the years, I’ve learned that only by working together and having policies of inclusion for all people, countries, and backgrounds, can we achieve our ambition of optimal oral health for all. My goal as FDI president is to collaborate closely with the global oral health community to further our vision as one. We must work together to develop new projects to increase oral health outcomes wherever possible. Developing a common vision is the only way we will tackle the global burden of oral disease.

I look forward to working closely with ADA leadership to explore how we can best incorporate this mission into the foundation of our Congress. Every Congress offers us an opportunity to harmonize our international perspective of oral health with the unique health context of the host country. This is what I am most excited about in the countdown to the Congress – the chance to narrow our lens and focus our efforts on what matters most to us as a community of dental practitioners.